7/18/2012 9:05 AM
Just for fun I put together an OL team with A++++ range guys at every position except catcher and pitcher:

1B: 1919 Hal Chase
2B: 1952 Billy Goodman
3B: 1981 Buddy Bell
SS: 2007 Troy Tulowitzki
OF: 2002 Darin Erstad, 2003 Mike Cameron, 1984 Kirby Puckett

Pitching staff was 95 Maddux, 97 Maddux, 21 Doak, 04 Joss playing in Ameriquest Field.

As you might expect, the team was pretty weak offensively (713 runs, 20th in the league).  Defensively they recorded 212 plus plays (by far the most in the league, more than the next 3 teams combined) against 13 minus plays.  Cameron was 34-0 in CF, Bell was 25-0 at 3B, Tulo was 33-2 at SS, Goodman was 26-1 at 2B, Chase was 30-0 at 1B.  Erstad was 15-0 in LF, 3-0 in CF, 1-0 at 1B.  Puckett was 17-0 in RF (I benched him toward the end of the season in favor of my AAA OF who had a much better bat and contributed 10 plus plays of his own.)  On the mound, 95 Maddux had 6 plus plays, 97 Maddux had 5.  The team also fielded .987, tied for best in the league. 

The pitchers - no doubt benefiting from all that glove work - were pretty darned effective:
95 Maddux: 26-4, 1.71, 0.86 WHIP
97 Maddux: 20-12, 2.98, 1.08 WHIP
21 Doak: 13-13, 4.11, 1.37 WHIP
04 Joss: 13-12, 2.81, 1.13 WHIP

The major shortcoming of the team, besides the weak offense, is that with all that salary committed to position players (43.5M, 3rd highest total in the league), I wasn't left with much for the bullpen and ended up pretty short of quality innings.  I started mops and AAA in 20 games, and wasn't quite good enough in the other 142 to make the playoffs.  Finished 91-71, 2 games out of the wild card, and had a pretty fatigued staff by the end.

I have no doubt someone can improve on this performance.  Things to think about:

-- Drafting slightly worse SP overall (allowing for more bullpen IP). 
-- Trying a different park, maybe one with more offense?  It seems to me that all that range is wasted in a place like Petco or Safeco where the park is already reducing offense, and that a ++ offense park might on net be the best place to put this team.
-- Drafting a high-offense catcher (or pitchers who can also hit) to help improve the team offensively?  I started out with 2006 Victor Martinez, but he got killed by all the SB teams in the league and I ended up dumping him for 2008 Bengie Molina.  Interestingly, Molina put up the best OPS on the team: .324/.351/.439.

So here's the challenge: can someone put together an OL team that makes 200 or more plus plays, and wins more than 91 games?  I fully expect the answer is yes...someone will win 110 or so.



7/18/2012 9:08 AM
Gimmick teams are fun. Even if you don't make the playoffs you can say, "Look at all them plus plays, foolz!"
7/18/2012 11:42 AM

Good post; something to think about.   I'm considering the challenge and agree taking a park favoring offense might add to the win total
7/18/2012 12:59 PM

Sounds like fun... going to have to give it a try.

7/18/2012 6:59 PM (edited)
I tried this same idea with finn2030's High School Glory Days theme but not nearly the success you had contrarian23.

My player pool was limited to 1991-1994 and here are my stats with my team currently sitting at 65-82 playing at Joe Robbie Stadium.  Have made 113 + plays which is only 1 more than the 2nd team.

Name (Bats) Pos Order % PA AB HR RBI SB AVG OBP SLG $
Wade Boggs '93 (L) 3B* 1 98 661 601 0 23 0 .235 .304 .261 5.24M 
Jay Bell '93 (R) SS* 2 100 662 594 10 61 0 .276 .350 .379 7.59M 
Kenny Lofton '94 (L) CF* 3 100 638 588 10 40 63 .252 .310 .352 9.17M 
Chris Hoiles '93 (R) C * 4 89 557 484 13 69 0 .240 .332 .362 5.97M 
Ray Lankford '92 (L) LF* 5 100 595 540 15 68 27 .231 .301 .369 7.71M 
Mark Grace '92 (L) 1B* 6 100 574 535 8 58 0 .264 .310 .359 6.54M 
Jody Reed '94 (R) 2B* 7 100 496 443 1 32 0 .221 .300 .266 5.68M 
Lance Johnson '94 (L) RF* 8 100 426 395 4 35 11 .243 .296 .352 5.97M 
 BENCH
Name (Bats) Pos Order % PA AB HR RBI SB AVG OBP SLG $
Glenallen Hill '93 (R) RF* Bench 91 101 92 7 17 0 .348 .396 .609 1.64M 
Matt Nokes '94 (L) C * Bench 100 115 111 2 14 0 .207 .235 .297 839K 
Gary Pettis '92 (S) LF* Bench 100 130 102 1 11 5 .245 .389 .324 1.18M 
Greg Pirkl '94 (R) 1B^ Bench 100 76 71 3 10 0 .225 .263 .366 571K 
Ernest Riles '92 (L) SS* Bench 88 72 68 0 7 0 .191 .236 .221 217K 
Eric Wedge '92 (R) C ^ Bench 100 75 68 2 10 0 .250 .320 .353 430K

7/18/2012 7:00 PM
Here are my pitchers which I'm very pleased with!

Pitcher Role % G W-L SV IP ERA OAV WHIP K/9 BB/9 $
Greg Maddux '94 (R)   100 54 15-11 0 266.2 2.53 .226 1.12 6.89 2.50 13.31M
Nolan Ryan '91 (R)   83 (84) 32 10-12 0 180.1 3.79 .214 1.42 9.58 5.79 6.57M
Kevin Tapani '91 (R)   77 (100) 54 8-15 1 244.0 4.43 .263 1.27 4.39 2.18 6.40M
Curt Schilling '92 (R)    Starter #5 94 (95) 36 12-15 0 215.2 4.67 .284 1.53 5.30 3.55 7.79M
 BULLPEN
Pitcher Role % G W-L SV IP ERA OAV WHIP K/9 BB/9 $
Kent Bottenfield '92 (R)   100 15 1-3 0 18.1 12.27 .430 2.95 4.91 8.35 805K
Todd Frohwirth '91 (R)   100 74 2-3 0 85.2 2.42 .206 1.21 7.98 4.10 4.11M
Doug Henry '91 (R)   88 (89) 48 1-4 0 35.0 2.83 .150 1.23 8.49 6.43 1.75M
Jim Poole '91 (L)   80 (87) 44 4-3 3 39.2 3.40 .227 1.11 6.58 2.27 1.58M
Mike Fetters '92 (R)   97 (98) 69 3-2 0 59.2 2.87 .193 1.19 6.03 4.37 2.03M
Bryan Harvey '91 (R)   100 59 3-5 34 68.1 1.58 .187 0.92 10.54 2.11 3.43M
Cal Eldred '92 (R)   100 28 6-9 0 100.0 3.33 .262 1.26 5.67 2.34 3.47M

7/19/2012 2:24 PM
Just curious contrarian23... how did that team do on turning DP's?
7/19/2012 2:32 PM
Hard to say because (a) the way WIS counts DPs at the team level is not accurate and (b) you have to take into account opportunities, not just raw DPs.  Presumably the plus plays mean many fewer runners on base than an average team, so fewer DP opportunities.

But their "total" was 306 against a league average of 318.  League-wide range was from 211 to 402, so they were pretty squarely middle of the pack.
7/19/2012 3:20 PM
In OLs, DPs tend to be down a bit, because speed usually dominates player choices.
7/19/2012 5:48 PM
Not sure I would have used any pitchers of the caliber of '95 Maddux in an OL, particularly after spending that much on my lineup...
7/19/2012 6:31 PM
I agree in retrospect...which is why my first suggestion above is to use lower quality SP.
7/19/2012 7:32 PM
Posted by contrarian23 on 7/19/2012 2:32:00 PM (view original):
Hard to say because (a) the way WIS counts DPs at the team level is not accurate and (b) you have to take into account opportunities, not just raw DPs.  Presumably the plus plays mean many fewer runners on base than an average team, so fewer DP opportunities.

But their "total" was 306 against a league average of 318.  League-wide range was from 211 to 402, so they were pretty squarely middle of the pack.
Accurate team double plays can be found under the pitching expanded stats.
7/19/2012 8:03 PM
Huh...learn something new every day.

OK then: this team turned 109 DPs.
Lg Avg: 113
Max: 141
Min: 75
7/19/2012 9:18 PM
I think to maximize +'s plays you should use low walk, high OAV guys.    

The old 1894 pitcher, A++++ fielder strategy............
7/21/2012 4:20 PM
Posted by Trentonjoe on 7/19/2012 9:18:00 PM (view original):
I think to maximize +'s plays you should use low walk, high OAV guys.    

The old 1894 pitcher, A++++ fielder strategy............
Low K helps too.
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